HONOLULU (KHON2) — Police have completed the investigation into a shooting incident at a Boy Scout camp near Honokaʻa in August.
The shooting, which left a boy dead, is believed to be accidental and no foul play is suspected in the incident.
Check out more news from around Hawaii
According to police, a boy who was unsupervised picked up a loaded firearm, and as he placed it back down, it discharged, killing an 11-year-old Boy Scout. Hawaii Police Department initially identified the victim as a 12-year-old boy but later corrected his age.
Police say the firearm is owned by the father of the boy who picked it up. Police have initiated 23 firearm-related offenses, one of them for criminally negligent storage of a firearm and have handed the case over to prosecutors who will ultimately decide.
“So as a part of that process, a prosecutor will review it to determine whether or not there is enough to charge. But they will also review whether or not there needs to be a follow-up investigation conducted by the police to make a better charging decision,” said Hawaii County Prosecutor Kelden Waltjen.
Eighteen firearms and ammunition were recovered.
“I cannot even wrap my head around it. It just doesn’t make any logical sense to me,” said Kainoa Kaku, president of the Hawaii Rifle Association, which works with the Boy Scouts on firearm safety regulations.
He said the incident seems to violate the three main rules: always keep the gun pointed in a safe direction, always keep your finger off the trigger until you’re ready to fire, and always keep your weapon unloaded until you’re ready to fire.
“It’s just a complete and utter breakdown of safety rules and guidelines. There’s no other way to put it, literally every single rule was broken and there’s absolutely no excuse for that,” said Kaku.
Kaku added that safety protocols also call for an adult assigned to each child who is handling a firearm.
“You need to have a responsible adult that’s there to supervise that minor at every single stage of handling a firearm,” he said.
Get Hawaii’s latest morning news delivered to your inbox, sign up for News 2 You
We reached out to the Boy Scouts Aloha Council and the national office but there’s been no response.